1st Edition

Activating Urban Waterfronts Planning and Design for Inclusive, Engaging and Adaptable Public Spaces

By Quentin Stevens Copyright 2020
    256 Pages 89 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    256 Pages 89 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Activating Urban Waterfronts shows how urban waterfronts can be designed, managed and used in ways that can make them more inclusive, lively and sustainable. The book draws on detailed examination of a diversity of waterfronts from cities across Europe, Australia and Asia, illustrating the challenges of connecting these waterfront precincts to the surrounding city and examining how well they actually provide connection to water. The book challenges conventional large scale, long-term approaches to waterfront redevelopment, presenting a broad re-thinking of the formats and processes through which urban redevelopment can happen. It examines a range of actions that transform and activate urban spaces, including informal appropriations, temporary interventions, co-design, creative programming of uses, and adaptive redevelopment of waterfronts over time. It will be of interest to anyone involved in the development and management of waterfront precincts, including entrepreneurs, the creative industries, community organizations, and, most importantly, ordinary users.


    Part 1: Plugging the Waterfront into the City

    1. Three ‘Southbanks’

    2. Postcolonial Waterfronts: Global Imagery and Local Realities

    Quentin Stevens, Marek Kozlowski and Norsidah Ujang

    3. Tracing the Shifting Waterfront

    4. Artificial Waterfronts

    Part 2: Switching the Waterfront On

    5. Appropriating the Spectacle

    Quentin Stevens and Kim Dovey

    6. The ‘City Beach’ as a New Waterfront Development Model

    7. Post-Fordist Placemaking

    Quentin Stevens and Mhairi Ambler

    8. Sandpit Urbanism

    9. A Temporary Waterfront: Prompting Public Engagement

    Jacob Mikkelsen, Quentin Stevens, Catherine Hills and Florian ‘Floyd’ Mueller



    Quentin Stevens is an Associate Professor in the School of Architecture and Urban Design at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia. He has professional degrees in Architecture and Urban Planning and previous taught at the Bartlett School of Planning, University College London. He has published widely on the social uses of public spaces, including the books Transforming Urban Waterfronts: Fixity and Flow, The Ludic City, and Loose Space. His current areas of research interest include temporary and tactical urbanism, the contribution that public space design makes to social cohesion, and the role of memorials in national identity.